For the past six years Reporters Without Borders has exposed the world’s “predators of press freedom” – men and women who directly attack journalists or order others to. Most are top-level politicians (including presidents, prime ministers and kings) but they also include militia chiefs, leaders of armed groups and drug-traffickers. They usually answer to no-one for their serious attacks on freedom of expression. Failure to punish them is one of the greatest threats to the media today.
In 2007 the presidents of Laos and Azerbaijan joined the list of these major enemies of press freedom, along with Mexican drug cartels that killed several journalists. The king of Nepal and the country’s Maoist leaders were taken off the list after the ceasefire between the two sides and a return to peace.